Bachelor of Arts with a Major in Cognitive Neuroscience

The bachelor of arts in cognitive neuroscience degree program addresses the fundamental theories, methods, and results involved in neurobiology, cognitive neuroscience, and the study of complex behavior. The major takes an integrated and rigorous approach that emphasizes convergence between the subfields of cognitive neuroscience and skill in presenting compelling neuroscientific arguments in both written and oral form. Students with sufficient interest and skill assist in undergraduate research and external internships.

The following requirements must be fulfilled:

The general requirements stated under Columbian College of Arts and Sciences, Undergraduate Programs.

Program-specific curriculum:

Required
The following introductory natural science courses (11-14 credits): two, two-course pairs in biology (BISC 1115/BISC 1125 and BISC 1116/BISC 1126 for 8 credits) and one course or one two-course pair in mathematics (MATH 1231 for 3 credits or MATH 1220/MATH 1221 for 6 credits):
BISC 1115
BISC 1125
Introductory Biology: Cells and Molecules
and Introduction to Cells and Molecules Laboratory
BISC 1116
BISC 1126
Introductory Biology: The Biology of Organisms
and Introduction to Organisms Laboratory
MATH 1220
MATH 1221
Calculus with Precalculus I
and Calculus with Precalculus II
or MATH 1231 Single-Variable Calculus I
Two courses in analytical methods (6 credits), selected from the following:
STAT 1127Statistics for the Biological Sciences 1
BISC 2584Introduction to Bioinformatics
CSCI 1012Introduction to Programming with Python
Three gateway courses (9 credits) that introduce core concepts, selected from the following:
ANAT 2160Human Functional Neuroanatomy 2
or SPHR 2106 Neural Substrates of Speech, Language, and Hearing
ANTH 1005The Biological Bases of Human Behavior
BISC 2320Neural Circuits and Behavior
PHIL 1153The Meaning of Mind
PHIL 2045Introduction to Logic
PSYC 2014Cognitive Psychology
PSYC 2015Biological Psychology
Six intermediate content courses (12 credits), which must include two courses from each of the following groups:
Cellular/Molecular/Systems Neuroscience
ANTH 3413Evolution of the Human Brain
BISC 2220Developmental Neurobiology
BISC 3320Human Neurobiology
Cognitive Neuroscience
PSYC 3118Neuropsychology
PSYC 3121Memory and Cognition
PSYC 3122Cognitive Neuroscience
PSYC 3124Visual Perception
SPHR 2133Autism
SPHR 3116Brain and Language
Cognitive Science
PHIL 3121Symbolic Logic
PHIL 3153Mind, Brain, and Artificial Intelligence
SPHR 2131Language Acquisition and Development
SPHR 2135Language: Structure, Meaning, and Use
One research/laboratory experience (3-4 credits)
This may be one semester of guided or independent research in ANTH, BISC, CHEM, PHIL, PSYC, or SPHR, or one of the following options: 3
BISC 2452
BISC 2453
Animal Behavior
and Animal Behavior Lab
PSYC 4106WResearch Lab in Sensation and Perception
PSYC 4107WResearch Lab in Cognitive Neuroscience
Electives
Four advanced content electives (12 credits), selected from the following:
ANTH 3413Evolution of the Human Brain
ANTH 3491Topics in Biological Anthropology 4
ANTH 3601Language, Culture, and Cognition
ANTH 3603Psycholinguistics
ANTH 3691Special Topics in Linguistic Anthropology 4
BISC 2220Developmental Neurobiology
BISC 2452
BISC 2453
Animal Behavior
and Animal Behavior Lab
BISC 3165Biochemistry I
BISC 3166Biochemistry II
BISC 3209Molecular Biology
BISC 3320Human Neurobiology
CHEM 2151
CHEM 2153
Organic Chemistry I
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory I
CHEM 2152
CHEM 2154
Organic Chemistry II
and Organic Chemistry Laboratory II
PHIL 3151Philosophy of Science
PHIL 3153Mind, Brain, and Artificial Intelligence
PHIL 4196Topics in Theory of Knowledge 4
PSYC 3118Neuropsychology
PSYC 3121Memory and Cognition
PSYC 3122Cognitive Neuroscience
PSYC 3124Visual Perception
PSYC 3180Seminar in Cognitive Science 4
PSYC 3198Current Research Issues 4
PSYC 3199Current Topics in Psychology 4
PSYC 4997Honors Seminar
SPHR 2133Autism
SPHR 2135Language: Structure, Meaning, and Use
SPHR 3116Brain and Language

1STAT 1127 is recommended, but an equivalent course may be substituted.

2ANAT 2160 is recommended, but SPHR 2106 may be substituted.

3 For SPHR, available only to students with a minimum 3.5 GPA in major courses and/or the permission of the instructor.

4 When the topic is relevant and with permission of the Program Director.

In addition to the University General Education Requirement, undergraduate students in Columbian College must complete a further, College-specific general education curriculum—Perspective, Analysis, Communication, or G-PAC. Together with the University General Education Requirement, G-PAC engages students in active intellectual inquiry across the liberal arts. Students achieve a set of learning outcomes that enhance their analytical skills, develop their communication competencies, and invite them to participate as responsible citizens who are attentive to issues of culture, diversity, and privilege.

G-PAC approved courses, Dean's Seminars, and Sophomore Colloquia that may be available for registration are listed on the CCAS Advising website.

Coursework for the University General Education Requirement is distributed as follows:

  • Writing—one approved course in university writing and two approved writing in the disciplines (WID) courses.
  • Humanities—one approved course in the humanities that involves critical or creative thinking skills.
  • Mathematics or Statistics—one approved course in either mathematics or statistics.
  • Natural or Physical Science—one approved laboratory course that employs the process of scientific inquiry.
  • Social Sciences—two approved courses in the social sciences.

Coursework for the Columbian College general education curriculum is distributed as follows:

  • Arts—one approved course in the arts that involves the study or creation of artwork based on an understanding or interpretation of artistic traditions or knowledge of art in a contemporary context.
  • Global or Cross-Cultural Perspective—one approved course that analyzes the ways in which institutions, practices, and problems transcend national and regional boundaries.
  • Humanities—one approved course in the humanities that involves critical thinking skills (in addition to the one course in this category required by the University General Education Requirement).
  • Local or Civic Engagement—one approved course that develops the values, ethics, disciplines, and commitment to pursue responsible public action.
  • Natural or Physical Science—one approved laboratory course that employs the process of scientific inquiry (in addition to the one course in this category required by the University General Education Requirement.
  • Oral Communication—one course in oral communication.

Certain courses are approved to fulfill the requirement in more than one of these categories.

Courses taken in fulfillment of G-PAC also may be counted toward majors or minors. Transfer courses taken prior to, but not after, admission to George Washington University may count toward the University General Education Requirement and G-PAC, if those transfer courses are equivalent to GW courses that have been approved by the University and the College.